Albeit the smallest of Osem’s factories, Givol, situated in the Holon industrial zone, is where we produce our popular old snack, unquestionably one of Osem’s flagship products – Bamba.
Most of the factory’s production lines are dedicated to Bamba manufacture, but Popco and strawberry Bamba are also produced here. The Givol factory site features a visitor center that caters primarily to children, introducing them to the food industry at large, and the Bamba factory in particular.
The Holon Bamba factory is not to be missed – the Bamba aroma permeates the surrounding area, and the image of the Bamba baby situated at the door of the factory leaves no room for doubt – this is where we produce the most popular, sought after, and most frequently sold snack in Israel.
The beginning, in 1963, did not bode well for the factory. The initial Bamba, a snack made of crushed, puffed corn, was supposed to have an aromatic cheese coating. But the flavor, so popular in the US, did not appeal to the Israeli pallet. Osem found a solution and replaced the cheese coating with peanut butter – and the rest, as they say, is history.
A history of flavors and textures, which became an integral part of the childhood memories of many Israeli children. A history of dizzying marketing success, built up and cultivated over dozens of years. The Bamba snack was initially sold at army canteens during the Six Day War, capturing the hearts of the soldiers who subsequently brought the snack back home with them at the end of the war. Bamba was then embraced as a family snack.
The factory complies with the ISO 2002 standard, and the Givol factory’s production division runs solely on automatic machinery. It boasts six production lines – round Bamba, strawberry Bamba, Popco, Comix, and two lines for the leading product – classic Bamba.
In the production process, the corn kernels are placed in a machine that transforms them – by a special pressure-based process – into tasteless, puffed, white, Bamba-shaped pieces. These pieces are transferred into storage containers and then into an oven where they are dried out to achieve their crunchy texture. The product’s coating gives it its flavor. The coating’s salient ingredient is peanut butter, and it also contains vitamins which render the product its high nutritional value. Of course, Bamba’s ingredients are all natural.
Almost daily, the factory is visited by scores of school children who enjoy learning about the site’s production lines, the basic ingredients from which Bamba is made, and how the treat is produced. But they especially look forward to the tasty surprise that awaits them at the tour’s end.